SBD/February 15, 2011/Marketing and Sponsorship

Obey Your Thirst: Coca-Cola Co. Extends Global NBA Deal Through '14

The NBA and Coca-Cola Co. today announced a multiyear extension of their global marketing partnership that dates back to '86. The Sprite brand, which has been the official soft drink of the NBA in the U.S. since '94, now will be Coca-Cola's lead brand associated with the league globally. Sprite will continue its sponsorship of the NBA Slam Dunk contest and also will conduct a variety of NBA-themed activities, including events, digital promotions and grassroots programs. The brand also will continue to present the Sprite Slam Dunk Showdown, a contest to find the best amateur dunker in North America (NBA). In Atlanta, Jeremiah McWilliams reports the extended deal runs through '14. Previously, Sprite "headlined the partnership in some markets and the Coca-Cola brand did so in others, most notably China." Sprite is "riding a winning streak" as of late. The brand recently posted its "third consecutive quarter of growth in North America, with sales rising four percent in the fourth quarter and two percent for the full year." The NBA, FIFA World Cup and the Olympics are the only three global deals for Coca-Cola Co. (ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 2/15).
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